Scribe of Siena

I loved this booked! It’s a time travel novel where Beatrice, a neurologist, goes to modern day Siena to take care of her brother’s estate after he dies.  Her brother was a historian researching the plague in Siena and Beatrice decides to pick up his unfinished research while she takes a sabbatical. She ends up finding a journal of a painter who lived during the plague and reading it causes her to time travel into the past where she meets the painter and becomes a scribe at a convent. She can’t figure out how to get back to modern day and eventually can’t decide if she wants to go back . . . err or forward.

The author, Melodie Winawer, is an associate professor of neurology, which I think made all the difference in pulling off Beatrice’s character. Beatrice’s internal musings come out exactly how you would expect a doctor or scientist to think, and made the character seem more authentic. I also really liked that Winawer’s detailed look at how Beatrice thinks ultimately ends up translating into emotions.  I thought it was neat way of showing how Beatrice felt without really describing her feelings. The descriptions of medieval Siena and the research behind the book seem well done. It felt real and believable, which isn’t easy for a time travel book. Frankly, I loved everything: the detailed characters, the setting, the quick moving plot, the love story, and etc. Highly recommend.

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